Scientists from the University of California, Riverside (UCR) led by Dr.
Meng Chen illustrates how plants sense temperature using genetic triggers in
model plant, Arabidopsis. Their paper is published in Nature Communications.
Chen and colleagues studied the role of phytochrome B, a molecular signaling
pathway that may play a vital role in how plants react to temperature. They
observed phytochrome B in Arabidopsis at 21 degrees Celsius and 27 degrees
Celsius under red light. The monochromatic wavelength allowed the team to
study how this particular plant sensor functions without interference from
other wavelengths of light. Results showed that phytochrome B works as a
temperature sensor during the day in the summer. The results also led them
to HEMERA, a transcription activator that turns on the
temperature-responsive genes that control plant growth. The team regards it
as the master control for temperature sensing in plants.
The researchers plan to expand their study to further understand how plants
react to temperature in molecular levels. They perceive that the findings
will help other researchers engineer crops that produce better yields amidst